Our organisation was founded in September 2019 by Krissy Mackintosh, who overcame her own mental health issues and has been hugely impacted by male suicide. With Renee Grant, Joanna Higgins Ware and Chris Fraser, the foundations for #Hear4U were developed to create change and increase awareness, around men's mental heath and suicide prevention, throughout Gisborne, Tairawhiti and New Zealand.
After three huge years and despite the challenges of Covid, on the 4th of April 2022, #Hear4U became a registered, charitable trust.
With a following of over 2800 people and growing everyday, it's evident from the overwhelming success of #Hear4U projects and events, that an organisation like this was very much needed – working as a connector, healer and educator for many in the community.
#HEAR4U charity work is dedicated to a local legend, Toby Fraser. In his memory we created the principles that our team believe in and practice everyday:
The way we listen can really impact the lives of others. Identifying the tone, manner and delivery when someone is suffering is instrumental in allowing them to speak up, without feeling judged, pressured or anxious.
"Actions speak louder than words" couldn't be more on point. Eye contact provides reassurance that you are listening and being empathetic to a person's thoughts and situation. Nothing is more powerful than supportive physical contact either – a shoulder touch, handshake, or modern day "man hug" makes all the difference.
We all crave it. When blokes join our team, we don't want to know all the bad things they have previously done (okay within reason...) We only want to know how to support them to heal, flourish, forgive and understand – it's okay to not be okay. Everyone has a story, or something hiding in their closet, but tomorrow is always a new day at #Hear4U.
If you can't understand, then showing respect for the way someone is struggling and why, is your next best option. Not everyone is looking for answers, but who doesn't like being respected? We've heard many colourful stories, but respecting our story tellers, has enabled our team to connect, understand and positively support others.
Community is how we roll!! Families, local businesses, sponsors and friends have taught us the amazing powers of being united. The more we all take time out to learn the importance of men's mental health awareness and suicide prevention, the brighter our futures will be. No one can succeed in life alone.
Kiwibank Local Hero Medallist 2022
Tairawhiti Men of the Year Award 2022
GDC Citizen's Civic Award Winner 2022
Movember Foundation Hall of Fame 2020
Eastland Wood Council Good Deed Winner 2021
We are lucky to count a number of businesses, organisations and awesome humans as part of our movement to advocate for Men's mental heath, well being and suicide prevention. Our heartfelt thanks to all involved and a special thanks to the Gisborne Herald for always sharing our story.